3 Common Cosmetic Dentistry Treatments

Cosmetic Dentist Alexandria, VA

If you are looking to improve your smile, you may be thinking of trying cosmetic dentistry. This type of dental work focuses on covering or treating certain issues to change the appearance of one's teeth, gums, or both. Most people have at least one complaint about their smile, ranging from missing, misshapen, and misaligned teeth to discoloration. A cosmetic dentist can recommend one or more procedures that can correct the issues in your smile and help increase your confidence.

Common cosmetic dentistry procedures

Cosmetic options can range from simple and quick to more complex and invasive, and the cost of these procedures can run the gamut to fit any budget.

1. Teeth whitening

Professional whitening is by far the most popular cosmetic dentistry procedure, and it can get rid of bad stains on teeth. Not only does the process produce quick results, but it also only takes one office visit, is non-invasive, and lasts a long time with proper care.

If it has been a while since your last professional cleaning, the tartar and plaque may be removed first before the dentist starts the whitening procedure. During the procedure, the dentist begins by protecting the gums with a shield or sealant material. Then, the whitening product is applied to the teeth. A UV light or laser helps to activate the bleaching agent for about 15 minutes. The whitening gel is then removed. These steps are repeated one or more times depending on the desired shade.

The results of professional teeth whitening can be customized to your particular shade and often lasts up to two years. However, the results will not last as long if you regularly consume dark-colored beverages like coffee, red wine, and tea, or if you use tobacco products.

2. Bonding or veneers

If you have discolored, chipped, cracked, or slightly crooked teeth, you may want to consider dental bonding or veneers. These cosmetic dentistry procedures also help to cover gaps or areas of damaged enamel. Although both bonding and veneers are applied to the front of the teeth, there are differences between the two.

For dental bonding, a dentist applies layers of composite resin and then hardens each layer with a special light. After the final layer is hardened, the teeth are trimmed and adjusted to the desired size and shape. Bonding typically does not last as long as veneers. However, the enamel is not taken off for the procedure, so tooth bonding is reversible.

For veneers, the dentist applies thin shells made of tooth-colored porcelain. To bond the veneers to the front of the teeth, the dentist must remove a fair amount of enamel, which makes the procedure permanent. Veneers usually have a longer lifespan than bonding. However, both veneers and bonded teeth can be fragile, so if you choose either of these, you should avoid biting or chewing on hard objects or food.

3. Dental implants

Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that create a sturdy foundation for removable or permanent replacements for missing teeth. To replace one or more teeth, the dentist inserts rods directly into the jawbone and then attaches crowns on top. These crowns function and look like real teeth. This procedure takes months to complete, but implants can last a lifetime if you take care of them. Benefits of implants include the following:

  • Durability: with proper care, dental implants can last a lifetime.
  • Eating: dental implants work like natural teeth, enabling you to consume your favorite food easily and painlessly.
  • Comfort: because implants are permanently affixed to your jaw, they are more comfortable than removable dentures.
  • Appearance: implants feel and look like your teeth; no one will know your original tooth was missing or damaged.
  • Speech: when removable dentures fit poorly, they can slip and cause mumbling or slurring during speech. Implants remain firmly in place, allowing you to speak with confidence.
  • Self-esteem: implants help you forget you had missing teeth, restoring confidence in your smile and improving overall self-esteem.
  • Oral health: implants do not require alteration to adjacent teeth, which improves the overall health and strength of the gums, jaw, and mouth. 
  • Convenience: dental implants take away the necessity of dental adhesives and the embarrassment of removing dentures.

Conclusion

Everyone has something they want to correct about their teeth. Whether it's missing teeth, discoloration, or a crooked smile, choosing cosmetic dentistry is a good option if you want to improve some aspect of your smile. Your dentist will discuss your concerns, goals, and budget before recommending a cosmetic treatment plan tailored to your individual needs.

Request an appointment here: https://alexoldtowndental.com or call Alexandria Old Town Dental at 7037631078 for an appointment in our Alexandria office.

Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Cosmetic Dentist in Alexandria, VA.

Recent Posts

Why A Cosmetic Dentist Needs To Remove Tooth Enamel Before Placing Veneers

Dental veneers are a great way to repair damaged teeth and improve the appearance of your smile. However, many are concerned that the process is invasive as the cosmetic dentist may have to remove a tiny amount of tooth enamel. Having a full understanding of the process and its purpose can help you determine if…

Get A Broken Tooth Treated To Avoid Complications

Fixing a broken tooth right away is important. This dental damage may seem like nothing more than a cosmetic problem, but it can lead to terrible consequences. Seeing a dentist sooner rather than later can provide immediate relief. If you want to find out the treatments for a broken tooth and its complications, here are…

Benefits Of A Non-Metal Dental Restoration

Dental restoration methods come in multiple forms, each with benefits and advantages. If you have a broken, chipped, cracked, or badly decayed tooth, you need some prompt attention. Your dentist can recommend different options to restore your tooth and revive your smile. In decades past, metal restoration was the preferred way to treat these issues.…

What To Discuss At Your Smile Makeover Consultation

Getting a smile makeover involves one or more procedures. It depends on the dental condition of the patient. The number of procedures also depends on what the dentist thinks would give the most favorable results. You and your dentist can talk about these and more at your first meeting. If you want to know what…

Recent Posts

A General Dentist Talks Tooth Extractions

A General Dentist Talks Tooth Extractions

Patients may be alarmed if a general dentist mentions that a tooth extraction may be needed during a routine appointment. A dentist’s primary goal is to preserve the teeth, but there some cases where a tooth cannot be saved using normal procedures. Understanding what situations can result in tooth removal and knowing the options available…

How Good Oral Health Can Improve Heart Health

How Good Oral Health Can Improve Heart Health

A general dentist often focuses on the importance of oral hygiene and how it can help the overall health of patients. There are many patients who are unaware of the impact that oral health can have on the heart’s health. The following explains how poor oral hygiene may be connected to the development of heart…